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What Iron Man 2's Sam Rockwell Says About Justin Hammer's Marvel Future And Tim Roth's Return For She-Hulk

Sam Rockwell as Justin Hammer in Iron Man 2 and Tim Roth as Emil Blonsky in She-Hulk: Attorney At Law, pictured side by side.
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

You never truly know when any of the numerous characters from the history of Marvel movies are going to show up. In recent years, we’ve seen folks like Ben Kingsley’s Trevor Slattery and, more recently, Tim Roth’s Abomination/Emil Blonsky poke their heads into the MCU after supposedly disappearing. So naturally a lot of people are wondering if Sam Rockwell’s Justin Hammer could have a Marvel future, and the man himself has an answer that shows off just how good of a dancer he happens to be. 

Our own Sean O’Connell got to speak with Rockwell during the press rounds for Searchlight Pictures’ upcoming comedic whodunnit See How They Run. That discussion turned towards Sam Rockwell's potential future of the MCU, as the franchise has been resurfacing former foes left and right. This was apparently news to Rockwell, as he gave CinemaBlend the following answer to this pressing question:

Did you say Tim Roth? ... Is that the Hulk villain? Holy shit, that's great. I love it. He's on the She-Hulk one? Oh, that's great. I gotta watch that. I don't know. Nothing as of yet. We'll see. I see you have a Marvel poster in your backdrop. ... I'm ready, I'm ready.

Well, if that isn’t a wonderful dance around the subject. It’s not surprising, as comic movie veterans of all stripes are usually shy to comment on their potential returns. Before the release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, we saw some prime footwork from Kevin Costner, who also politely refused to comment on a similar query about any sort of reprisal of Jonathan Kent. 

However, the recent phase of Marvel Cinematic Universe projects and news has made Justin Hammer’s fate all the more intriguing. As noted previously, Tim Roth’s Abomination has been featured in both Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, as well as more recently in an episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. Before this resurgence, Roth’s character was last seen in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, which has prompted many a Marvel fan to brush up on Abomination’s place in the MCU.

Though strangely enough, Trevor Slattery from Iron Man 3 bridges both Abomination and Justin Hammer in a fun way. Ben Kingsley's actor/would-be Mandarin also featured in Shang-Chi, but was notably revived in the 2014 Marvel One-Shot All Hail the King; which saw Slattery in the same supervillain jail as Sam Rockwell's Justin Hammer. 

The Marvel Cinematic Universe's past is coming back into focus, and it’s fitting considering how Phase 4 has been acknowledged as the big reset for the future. Sam Rockwell’s Justin Hammer certainly has room to breathe in this big launchpad to the next step of MCU history. All that has to happen is for Kevin Feige to find the right spot to slot him into the action, and Tony Stark’s nemesis will be dancing again in no time. That is, if he hasn't already done so, and we're just not privy to such a decision. 

In the meantime, you can catch Sam Rockwell leading an all-star ensemble in See How They Run, which brings the whodunnit back to the big screen starting September 16th. For a look at what else is on the horizon at the movies, check out the listing of upcoming movies headed to a theater near you. 

Meanwhile, if you’re trying to keep all the MCU threads in order, you can revisit movies like Iron Man 2, provided you’re a Disney+ subscriber. Though if you’re looking for 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, you’ll need to go to HBO Max at the time of this writing. 

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.